On Friday, the Environmental Legislative Caucus presented 10 new bills that address issues such as carbon emissions and cesspools.
Nicole Lowen, a state representative, is co-chair and head of House Energy & Environmental Protection Committee. Her bills aim to reduce emissions by 70% by 2030, compared with 2005 levels, and mandate energy efficiency measures at all state facilities.
Her third bill addresses the 80,000 state cesspools which have a statutory obligation to be converted by 2050.
Lowen stated that “the bill were introducing this years sort of starts a proces of attrition by requiring cesspool converter at the point of selling of a property.” “And this bill also contains a fully refundable tax credit of $15,000, $10,000 or $7,500 depending upon the income level of filers that would help offset the cost for conversion.”
Sen. Mike Gabbard was also co-chair of this caucus. He introduced three bills. He proposes to increase visitor green fees and establish a carbon incentive program for sustainable forest practices and regenerative agriculture.
He also authored a bill that would add a green amend to the states constitution.
Gabbard stated that “Green amendments” are additions to the Bill of Rights section of a state constitution that recognize and preserve the rights of all people, regardless of race, religion, income, or gender.
The caucus also introduced bills on four topics: decommissioning Red Hill’s fuel storage facility; adding a tax on carbon; improving soil health; and protecting native birds from wind turbines.